Gaming/Video Encode Machine

Hi there folks!

First wanted to thank people in advance for all the advice and time you put in here helping each other out.

Been a few years since my last build and I am way outdated. Spent the last few days trudging through threads to get a better clue but I wanted to run a few things by folks

Budget: Trying to stay around $1000
Use: Mainly gaming and normal use but I occasionally edit/encode home movies too.

I would like to leave the door open for Xfire setup or future upgrades.
I am going to a 20 or 22 inch widescreen for games 1680X1050 res.

OCing: I have Oced before I will do some moderate Ocing with this setup.

Questions: I see some folks considering a Quad core setup in this price range for its video editing and multitasking benefits. Any suggesting for a build like that or what benefits I might get out of it? Also need a good ram to fight this setup at a decent price? Feel free to make some suggestions or mods to this.

THANKS!


Was thinking of this RAM:
gSkil 4 BG - $60
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231246

Current Build suggestion:

Antec 300 - $55
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042

WD 630 HD - $74
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

Sapphire 4870 1 BG - $189
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102801

Corsair 650tx - $99 (- another $20 for MIR)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005

Gig UD3P - #135 (- another $20 MIR)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128358

Intel 8500 - $190

Xig 1283V Dark Knight - $40
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029

Current Price: about $900 ATM

got all the other odds and ends but main core is there.
31 answers Last reply
More about gaming video encode machine
  1. You've got very good choices for components such as the Corsair PSU, great choice there! Everytihng looks good, except you are right if you were to game and multitask and do some video editing then go with a quad core. Something like a Q9550? But LGA775 is a old platform and might be soon replaced by another platform. Really nice setup otherwise tho.
  2. Axeon said:
    You've got very good choices for components such as the Corsair PSU, great choice there! Everytihng looks good, except you are right if you were to game and multitask and do some video editing then go with a quad core. Something like a Q9550? But LGA775 is a old platform and might be soon replaced by another platform. Really nice setup otherwise tho.


    My history is basically ride the machine for 3-5 years without CPU upgardes (maybe change the GPU or Ram if needed) so I am not sure I am that worried about platform upgrades.

    What type of price jump for a Q9550 CPU and Mobo?


    Thanks
  3. On the Gigabyte website it saids a C2Q is supported by the board and specifically the Q9550 is still supported, at Newegg, the E8500 3.16Ghz CPU is 189.00 with free shipping lol. and the Q9550 is $269.00. If you want to stick to this price range a Q8300 is still supported by your board and is still $189.00 with 2.5Ghz x4 cores. Here is the link ofr the Quad Core CPU
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115207
  4. I'd agree Axeon i would go with Quad core. The other thing that comes to mind is that you are going with a ati card. So sticking with the best support there would be a AMD proccessor and mobo, perferably with crossfire support.

    Amd prices have dropped and you can get a good deal on most of their products. With that you get all the overclocking tools Amd has to offer.
  5. ^ +1, St-Owned has great advice there, sometimes a AMD is better, for the price right now a Quad Core CPU from AMD is cheaper than a Intel CPU.
  6. Yep Quad core would be better, I do a medium amount of video encoding and the difference between my E6300 C2D and Q6600 Q2D is huge :)

    I know the E6300 isn't a patch on the E8500 mind you!

    I don't think 775 will be dead for a while, give at least 12months..
  7. Yeah, but for games not many utilize Quad Core CPU's so encoding video files would be FAST with a C2Q
  8. I was going to mention that, about the game not utilising Quad's BUT video encoding certainly will!!

    Hopefully some newer releases will come out and utilise the Q2D's better... although i'm skeptical
  9. Thanks for the replies.

    I dont mind swapping cards to a Nvidia based card. Always liked those too.

    and I can spend a few hundred either way if its a significant difference. Sounds like a Q9XXX is the way to go then?
  10. Well depends how long you want to keep this system for, the LGA775 platform is getting a bit outdated and spending that much is a waste if you plan on upgrading fast. That Q9550 will have a vast difference between the E8500
  11. maybe better just to spend a few hunderd more and go core I7 then? Can always upgrade down the road (ram or CPU) as needed. Go barebones-ish....

    Derek
  12. Wow, from a E8500 to a i7 lol, not i'm your planning on gaming, no don't get the i7. That Q9550 is a true quad core (i think), and is a good performer. This will last you a long time still tho, I still use a S478 P4 lol. Go with the Q8300 if your on a budget you can always upgrade. And that mobo supports a wide range of CPU's anyways.
  13. I highly recommend the Zalman 9700 at $35(non-LED) or $40(LED) with all copper vs the aluminum heatsink/fan. The Zalman won't clog up with dust as quickly as the Xig. I have fixed some friends' systems and their heatsink/fan with similar design are always full of junk after only a couple of months. I haven't had to clean my Zalman's in over a year. Plus, they are rather quiet.

    CPU: I do a lot of video encoding in addition to my career in video editing & compositing and I do most of my encoding overnight; so, going from my Q6600 to an i7 would not help at all. Going from a Q8300 overclocked to 3.2GHz to an i7 OC'd to 3.2GHz would give you about 10-15% better encoding performance. For video encoding, nothing can touch Intel's current cpu's from $160 on up, especially because they can be OC'd so well. I don't know if you plan on encoding HD movies, but encoding a 2hr Blu Ray with my Q6600 OC'd to 3.0GHz takes about 10-11hrs with all the high quality settings enabled and 2pass using RipBot264. So, an i7 @ 3.2GHz would take about 8.5-9 hrs.

    Question: do you want to protect your data? Is your data important to you? Do you want to increase overall system performance and responsiveness? Load games faster?

    If yes to any of those, then look at adding another WD 640GB drive to run a Raid 1 for OS/Apps/Storage and a Raid 0 for cache/games. This can be easily done using an Intel motherboard with ICH9R and ICH10R southbridge chipsets. Raid 1 mirrors your data so when a drive fails, you lose no data and Raid 0 almost doubles the speed of your drives but when a drive fails, you lose all data on that Raid 0 array. That is why you would only use Raid 0 for unimportant data.
  14. drteeth said:
    maybe better just to spend a few hunderd more and go core I7 then? Can always upgrade down the road (ram or CPU) as needed. Go barebones-ish....

    Derek

    Well actually you can get a i7 build around the 1K mark...

    CPU + Mobo
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.181982

    RAM
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227365

    Graphics
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102830

    CASE -
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042

    CPU Cooler -
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029

    PSU -
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139006

    HDD-
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

    Total - $1109 without rebates...
    Including rebates, $1044
  15. You say you wanted a system that could support 2 GFX card, make sure the Antec 300 casing can, otherwise you might have to get the Antec 900/900-2.
  16. spend the extra and get a 690, it'll give you a lot more space than the 300.

    not to mention better cooling.
  17. thanks for the advice. Moding things as I go.

    So I7 upgrade is mainly for platform upgradability at this stage?

    So Q9550 is a better cost option if I am the type to ride a machine for 3-5 years or so? Same Mobo and all that just upgrade the CPU and Case. I use a Zalman Copper now and like it. Just like the mount option on the Xig, people seem to like the security.

    Thanks for the advice on the HD and Tower options... looking into those. I do want to backup a lot of what I do, considering its kid and dental stuff.
  18. I traveled from Virginia to Chicago in a car that has really tight suspension so you feel all bumps, and Indiana's highway was HORRID. In the car, I had both of my PC's with Zalman 9700LED's on both and neither had any problem. So, don't worry about that. The Xig will clog up with dust quickly unless you take an air can to it every month.

    The case is too small for the larger gfx cards.

    You can save some money and go with the Q8300 instead of the Q9550. Both overclocked to 3.2GHz, the Q9550 will be only 3-4% faster in some areas. Newegg has some great combos for the Q8200 and Q8300. Q8300 + ASUS P5Q Pro for $295($15 off) or P5Q Pro + Vista Ultimate for $65 off.
  19. ^^. Wrong you might be thinking about the E8400 which has a 3.0Ghz clock, but that Q8300 has a 2.5Ghz clock not the same as the Q9550.
  20. drteeth said:
    Hi there folks!

    First wanted to thank people in advance for all the advice and time you put in here helping each other out.

    Been a few years since my last build and I am way outdated. Spent the last few days trudging through threads to get a better clue but I wanted to run a few things by folks

    Budget: Trying to stay around $1000
    Use: Mainly gaming and normal use but I occasionally edit/encode home movies too.

    I would like to leave the door open for Xfire setup or future upgrades.
    I am going to a 20 or 22 inch widescreen for games 1680X1050 res.

    OCing: I have Oced before I will do some moderate Ocing with this setup.

    Questions: I see some folks considering a Quad core setup in this price range for its video editing and multitasking benefits. Any suggesting for a build like that or what benefits I might get out of it? Also need a good ram to fight this setup at a decent price? Feel free to make some suggestions or mods to this.

    THANKS!


    Was thinking of this RAM:
    gSkil 4 BG - $60
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231246

    Current Build suggestion:

    Antec 300 - $55
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042

    WD 630 HD - $74
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

    Sapphire 4870 1 BG - $189
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102801

    Corsair 650tx - $99 (- another $20 for MIR)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005

    Gig UD3P - #135 (- another $20 MIR)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128358

    Intel 8500 - $190

    Xig 1283V Dark Knight - $40
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029

    Current Price: about $900 ATM

    got all the other odds and ends but main core is there.



    You should get the dragon platform for that price range...take a look at anandtech's comparison of the x4 940 and x3 720 over clocked compared to the core 2 quads and i7...there is virtually no difference at all in performance between all the cpus except for the i7, which is a bit faster in some games, but the price difference is pretty big as well.

    http://www.anandtech.com/mb/showdoc.aspx?i=3533&p=9

    For your budget this system should be excellent...the only thing u would need to upgrade in the distant future would be the processor, and let me just say that wont be within the next 2 years hopefully...unfortunately AMD does not have a good AM3 quad core atm, the x4 810 is crippled and frankly i don't like it much. The x4 940 on the other hand is fantastic especially when overclocked, but it is an EOL AM2+ socket, which i would recommend not buying at this time..

    None the less the x3 720 is still a truck load of performance when overclocked to 3.6ghz and above, and it should be fairly easy to achieve that with the cooler I have selected.

    So, here is my AM3 build...the highlights are the 4850x2 2GB card; since your primary concern is gaming, so it makes sense to get a more powerful graphics card as opposed to a very high end and expensive cpu, and the 4850 x2 as you would know is more powerful then any single GPU on the market today, including the GTX 285.

    I have also selected dual 640GB Western Digital Black Edition drives in raid, for data security and speed.


    COOLER MASTER HAF 932 RC-932-KKN1-GP -$139.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119160

    DUAL- Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB in Raid -$74.99 x2
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

    ASUS M4A78T-E AM3 DDR3 AMD 790GX -$139.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131366

    PC Power & Cooling S75QB 750W -$119.99 -$20 MIR= $99.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817703009

    G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) -$59.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231190

    XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V -$39.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029

    COMBO
    AMD Phenom II X3 720 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W
    SAPPHIRE 100270SR Radeon HD 4850 X2 2GB -$394.98 - $15MIR= $379.98
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.177931

    Total
    $1056.54 (including taxes and shipping) - $35 MIR= $1021.54
  21. If you only want to play games, that would be a decent rig. Just go to TomsHardware's CPU charts and the AMD's can't touch even the Q8/9xxx cpus in video encoding and most other areas. The i7 is about 33% faster than Phenom II and only 10-15% faster than Q8/9xxx series.
    I think that since you did not say what games exactly you will be playing, that you are not a "hardcore" gamer who needs all the settings cranked up. Plus, you will be using a 1680x1050 monitor and even my 2yr old 8800GT can play just about all games at that resolution.
  22. After reading a lot of reviews and some sounds advice. I am tempting to go with the following system. Given my history of limited sys upgrades, I think I want to go with something that has a bit more of both the things I want.

    Let me know what you guys think.

    Again 22 inch monitor at respectable res for games and I will be playing whatever I can get my hands on and runs on my system.

    Any suggestions on the DVD Burner, not really looking at Blu ray at this time... would like a decent software suite but whatever works the best....

    Core I7 920 - hoping for DO step --- anyone know how to improve my chances?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115202

    Asus P6T Deluxe v2
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131365

    Antec 900
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129021

    Dark Knight Cooler - was considering above mention Zalman 9700 - any additional comments on these? What thermal paste is good right now?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029

    2 WD black 640 drives for above mentioned raid config
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

    EVGA GTX 260 - cost driven... can always upgrade later as needed
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130372

    Corsair Tx650 - Should I get the 750?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005

    OCZ 3X2GB
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227381

    DVD Burner???? - throw me some suggestions please.

    Total once the burner is in there is about at $1200
    Also if there are some small price movements on any of the items up or down that you think would be best let me know. still got about $200 either way I can play with.


    thanks for the advice.... looking foward to getting this setup
  23. i like the changes u made , but plz do not get the older 192 core gtx 260, instead get the newer but still pretty cheap 216 core gtx 260 for the same price....
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130434

    if u can afford it, I would recommend one of these for the longer run so you dont have to upgrade any time soon..

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814161278

    or

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130475

    either of them would be significantly faster then the gtx 260 216 core, and obviously much faster then the slower 192 core u had selected. The motherboard u selected can also run both sli and crossfire, so u cant go wrong going either the red or green route.


    DVD burner with light scribe...
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151173


    Oh and u should be fine with the Xigy cooler...the Zalman is overhyped imo...check the reviews on the Xigmatek...as far as thermal paste goes...u can get the legendary arctic silver 5 or ceramique and u r set.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100007
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100009&Tpk=ceramique


    the ceramique is non electrical conductive or capacitive so it is safer to use in case u accidently spill it over the board circuitry but it runs around the same or one degree warmer then the arctic silver 5 which is also non conductive but capacitive.

    "Thermal Paste showdown" article on Hardocp
    http://enthusiast.hardocp.com/article.html?art=MTYyNywxLCxoZW50aHVzaWFzdA==
  24. The Zalman is not overhyped but the Xigi should work fine. The reason I like the Zalman so much is it doesn't clog up with dust so easily. When a heatsink/fan gets clogged, its thermal dissipation drops more and more as it gets clogged more and more. Just look at video cards with larger fans. My cousin just had his 8 month old $200 video card fry itself due to dust and he only plays WoW so the card wasn't being pushed very hard. Luckily, he asked me for help and I also noticed his heatsink/fan was very clogged. This all doesn't matter if you use an air can once a month, which you should do anyways.

    Did you look at the Combos for the i7 or ASUS board? There are some good ones with different video cards.

    For the i7, do you have a Microcenter near you? Plus, the i7 is $230 there too and you can order online & have it shipped; however, going to the store will allow you to find the new stepping. As far as order from newegg, it is all luck. I remember when the Q6600 G0 stepping came out and reading all the people on newegg complaining that newegg wouldn't guarantee that stepping; so, I went to Microcenter which also had a much lower price.

    For the gfx card, just look at TomsHardware's charts for each game you want to play and see which card provides good enough gameplay at your 1680x1050 res. I don't play too many games but when I saw World in Conflict, I had to get it. So, I looked at the various cards(this was when the 8800GT first came out) and decided the 8800GT would provide adequate FPS at the same res as you. Even if I did play all the latest games, I would never go for the top cards because the performance & price keep getting better and better every month. The $300 I paid for my 8800GT can now be beat by a $120 card less than 15months later.
  25. Final Build I think.....


    Core I7 920 - hoping for DO step --- anyone know how to improve my chances?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6819115202 or
    http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10009642
    Zip has an extra $30 on MIR

    Asus P6T Deluxe v2
    http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10009631
    save $20 over newegg instant.

    Corsair TX750- Decide it leaves more options open for a few extra bucks
    http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10007112
    Save another $10 after MIR over NewEgg

    If I buy from Zip I save $60 bucks over the same items from NewEgg... if I am reading that right.


    Antec 900
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129021

    Dark Knight Cooler - with arctic 5 paste
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029

    2 WD black 640 drives for above mentioned raid config
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

    XFX GTX 260 - Anyone have a reason to buy one manufacture over another anymore? This one comes with two games....
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150329

    Corsair TX750- Decide it leaves more options open for a few extra bucks
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139006

    OCZ 3X2GB - Got any other Ram Suggestions or is this going to be good a good overclocker?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227381

    Pioneer DVD burner
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827129032

    Asus 22 Monitor - this looks pretty damn good any other suggestions?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824236050

    Mouse and keyboard yet to be determined --
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16823126040&Tpk=LOGITECH%20920-000492%20Delux%20660

    ADDED: Scythe Flex-120E x 2
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185005

    Could use a set of speakers i guess if I am already getting a whole new setup... suggestions for 3 and 5 channel?

    with seperate purchasing from Zip its $1416.11
    all purchased from newegg - $1475.21
    both after considering MIR ---- zip adds two more rebates to deal with I guess but ya save $60 bucks! :)

    Let me know what you all think

    all from newegg....


    Thanks for your input!
  26. Many of the newegg links do not work.

    I don't know much about overclocking i7, so I cannot comment on the RAM.

    For the casing, just to let you know there is also the Antec 900-2; it cost ~40$ more, a bit wider (8.6" vs 8.1") and comes with washable air filters. Might not interest you, but just want to let you know.

    I think the biggest reasons to go for a manufacturer over the other are the warranty and support; many people also refrain from some because of past bad experiences (isolated case or not). For example, XFX has double lifetime warranty which means the warranty will be transferred to the next owner if you sell the card (original owner to 2nd owner only I think), some manufacturer will also accept overclocking without voiding the warranty. As for support, most people will tell you to stay away from MSI for that reason ... no support at all if you are experiencing issues.
  27. fixed the links...

    thanks for the advice there. Hopefully the XFX seems to have good ratings

    yeah I saw that on the 900-2... would like that too because it has fan control speeds right on the back... any other reasons to get that one?

    WOOT! Just found local store that has the 900-2 for $120....

    Also I should buy one or two 120mm fans to add to the two that come with it... any suggestions there?

    hows this fan?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185006
  28. To my knowledge the 900-2 has only the following differences over the 900:
    Air filters (heard the "tower" HSFs (same shape as the one you chose) tend to accumulate dirt quickly so ...)
    All black finish
    More space on top tray (I think)
    Wider (don't know if it's a plus, I always like more space and you never know if they will make even bigger HSF)
    Back fan control (controls what, not sure, I think I read somewhere it controls the back and top fans).
    Antec 1200 look
    Is it worth 40$ more, I think it is mostly a personal choice (however, I would recommend 900-2 if very dusty environment). Also, check other sources for that item, I know here in Canada, NewEgg charges ~200$CAD for that case (which is about right given the 20% exchange rate), but I was able to find one for ~145$CAD (~120$USD) elsewhere.

    As for additional fan, I don't think it's necessary, but if you want to, might as well get Antec ones (unless you find better). I think the blue LED ones are the exact same model that come with the case; they all cost about 15$. I know I will probably add a side intake fan, but mostly because I'm 10$ short of having free shipping where I plan on buying :P.
  29. luckily its only $10 more for me to get the case local and I save $5 on shipping... so basically $5 more to have the case is awesome. thanks for making me look around a bit more :)

    I added two quite 120mm Scythe fans... I plan on Ocing so I dont mind a little more air.

    Going to buy tonight unless I hear some other objections to the plan!
    Does this look good?

    BTW: am i correct here:
    This looks like a better deal for the monitor i guess... $30 bucks more

    Asus 21.5
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824236053

    Asus 22 Monitor -
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824236050

    little bit of overkill for the card I ahve but at least I have some upward mobility later... and can do HDMI hookups


    Thanks for your help....
  30. Forgot how great the Scythe fans were ... will change my order :P.


    As for PC monitors, I'm not a fan of the "1080p" trend. To work 1920x1080 is pretty useless as most office documents (Word, source code, ...) are a lot longer than wider so the extra horizontal space is not really useful; same thing for websites. I just look how much left and right padding I have on most website with 1680x1050 (like Tom's BTW :P) and cannot imagine if I had 1920 px wide...

    I see some use for such a screen, but mostly if also used as a LCD TV (HD video, console games). You also have to consider if PC games actually accept the 16:9 form factor (no idea) and the extra GPU power required to play games at that resolution.

    I'd rather save the money for a dedicated LCD TV.
  31. Good points.,.. I was thinking $30 bucks to leave the door open for HDMI inputs later and I would run at 1680X1050 anyways for most stuff.


    Hoping I get the DO stepping... you can pay $50 to guarntee it from a few sights but thats just silly for what I need.
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